Showing posts from July, 2007

A Place in My Heart

The ice-cream seller wore a round white solid hat, the colour contrasting with his skin, darkened by the harsh equatorial sunlight. The freezer box sat on a tricycle placed against the grey-brown walls of the house. There were other vendors invited to cater for this children's birthday party, but this purveyor of frozen delights stands out in my memory.

The party was organised by the Lim family, supervised over benignly by a doctor who always wore fitting clothes and whose big eyes shone out behind her glasses. Whether adorned in her traditional kebaya blouse or in her Western fashion, she always provided a picture of orderliness, kind straight talking and a twist of humour. I loved going to visit her and her family on Sunday evenings, and also because I enjoyed interacting with her children. I also had opportunity to stay overnight at times with her sons, and her youngest daughter is like the sister I never had.

There were the picnics by the rather sheltered beaches of my home is…

The Sweetness of Life

The weekend begins, but before I lose myself in the state of being voluntarily hanging in a state of nothingness, with no care for a sense of time and the rigour of schedule, I want to be thankful for some things today that are wonderfully important to me.

I have had my eyes opened and my mind broadened to rise above the apparent surface and regime of what life seems to be. Whilst I subject myself to the so-called requirements of a life, it is only fair that life subjects me to certain encounters that widens my perspectives and thereby liberates my attitude and thinking. And that experience has been gratifying.

I just had the opportunity to know that a close mate has been given the all clear bill in health, after persistently and patiently overcoming a growth that is not desired. I salute him in this welcome positive of events, and I admire the consistent and reliable care that his wife has bestowed on him.

Inside me, I begin to acknowledge more the efforts of individuals in my work…

Be AWARE in Our Personal Time Management

After years of available time to practice, I am no master of this, the delicate art of time management.

Do I have a structured plan to do things as it should be? Not all the time. Do I actually finish off the more important things in a typical work day filled with must-dos, look-forward-to-dos and hijacked energy-draining diversions from people who do not care for me? Maybe. Do I feel totally satisfied by day's end that I have achieved what I set out for earlier at dawn - remember all that stuff about "tomorrow is another day" and a fresh start? Nope.

Effective time management to me is the result of a confluence of several things - attitude, emotional intelligence, planning, navigation and persistence to want to achieve mitigating the most risky items in the midst of environmental limitations, undue influence and how other human beings treat you. I still ride this journey of time management, and if I allow myself to experiment, observe and learn, I enjoy how to apply be…

A New Beginning

After the fun of test driving and developing patience over administrative processes, the long wait was forgotten as enjoyment set in - my appreciation to Danielle and Shane Campbell for joining me in this adventure to choose a new vehicle.

Goodbye Zoom Zoom

Hey what's this yellow Twitty Bird? Complimentary car from dealer while waiting for new car arrival

How Was Your Weekend?

I was asked , so what do you do on a weekend?

My preferred answer was "Nothing, I just let myself free of schedules, follow-ups, the computer and just let my mind ride on the wave of liberation". The reality is very different.

Friday evening should be for chilling out, but when my commitments at work and business call, I make time for them, even then. The end of the week was normally released in catching up with mates working in the central business district, and taking a late train home to the suburbs, but now that I am living outside a capital city, I just make sure I give my inner soul a special treat. Dining out, having drinks, catching a movie or laughing with friends. I think it is important to celebrate the week, to recognise people who do not care for me and more importantly, acknowledge those who do. And then to sleep late, to not be bound by the demands of time and obligation. There is no shopping pressure, as most retail outlets are closed at the same time as off…

The World of the Straits Chinese Maiden

Settings for meals (above)

Inner courtyard (above)

Kitchen long table (above)

Traditional tiffin carrier (below)

Bridal chamber

Working Teams

Davin Gaynes, Kevin Yong and Josh Atkins (above)

Elaine Kow, Theodore Sokolovic, Phil Williams, Chris Mowbray and Chris Perre (above)

Chris Perre, Kevin Yong and Shibani Iyer (below)

Krish De, Josh Atkins and Daniel Redman (above)

Krish De, Josh Atkins and Kevin Yong (above)

John Walter and Daniel Redman (above)

Dancing In the Street

"You can't hurry love, you just have to wait."
"It was only my imagination , running out of the way."
"Twist and shout!"

Human Nature, an Aussie singing group from Sydney's south-west heartland, are better than ever. Not just in showmanship, continuing captivation, audience grabbing attention and building up the crescendo for the fans to be literally dancing in their seats, but also to show a sense of giving back to the community. Having a TV personality, Andrew Denton, introduce to the audience a lady who has endured much deterioration of health, but whose personal wish is to publicly sing with Human Nature and apparently looks fine, may seem to be a publicity stunt by some, but to me, it makes a statement about the heart.

I was privileged to witness the latest tour of this four-man group whose key display tool is their voice box. They can harmonise effectively on a tune without any musical instrument, and yet render their versions of retro songs…

Graceful, Grateful Moments

On a cool winter's night, think of cream brulee. Soft melting insides hidden below a thin crispy crust that is neither overdone nor too flimsy, but just with the right texture when you bite into it, savouring the flavour of infused caramel. Combine it with the sour-sweet sensation of fresh dark red raspberries and the nippiness of the evening air seems a distant window away.

The dessert is what you have been saving yourself for, after a light mains of seared scallops, juicy and firm, graced by sweet green long beans and refreshingly slim baby carrots. You recall the savoury cuts of john dory blending into the fettucine on another occasion, with the pasta pesto highlighted by spiced prawns. Tonite, the fettucine would have been too heavy with the cream brulee.

A meal is accentuated with the right company. Individuals whom I feel comfortable with and can relate to without effort. People who make me want to be myself, when politeness is not imposed but spontaneously accompanies relax…